When I first got clean I didn’t have a whole bunch to be grateful for, or an attitude that bestowed it. The outside of my life was still fairly intact but my insides were a vast, empty void. I knew that I wanted a better life…I was out of other “options” so I stayed and watched how others lived and spoke about their experience, strength and hope. When I first heard people talking about gratitude, or saying what a grateful alcoholic they were, I thought, “This is not going to be my kind of deal.” My kind of grateful was that I didn’t get a DUI, or grateful that I didn’t make an ass of myself when I was loaded, grateful that no one knew how broken I was, or grateful that I was well enough to drive my kids to school so that I could then go back to sleep. Grateful alcoholic…NEVER!
I stayed, I listened and what I found was that my perspective on my life, my disease and my view of my past started to change. All things that are mentioned in The Promises of AA started to unfold. I started to soften and I was able to find some real situations to be grateful for. Not situations on the outside either, but an inner shift that I could begin to build my new foundation of recovery on. I found gratitude in recovery was the golden treasure. It is what colors all experiences a little better; a little lighter, and a little softer.
So, when thinking about what to call our blog we thought about the journey inward, the journey to a better life, and the magic that happens when you Uncover or Recover GRATITUDE.
What is Gratitude you might ask?
Gratitude means thanks and appreciation. It’s the warm feeling you get when you remember the person who offered you coffee at your first meeting, or shook your hand, or simply smiled at you as if to say “I see you. I get you and its okay”
Gratitude is different from indebtedness. Gratitude, which rhymes with “attitude,” comes from the Latin word gratus, which means “thankful, pleasing.” Unlike indebtedness, you’re not anxious about having to pay it back. Gratitude is a feeling of good—a form of acknowledging our blessings. It’s the ability to love and be loved, a willingness to forgive, it is compassion and celebrating the present. It is also something you want to pay forward.
So, welcome to Recovering Gratitude: our recovery blog that shares our stories of hope, our journeys through addiction—the lessons, the pain, the struggles, and the great fact that we are not alone in all of this.